This sweet and simple offering is ideal for sharing one-on-one or for featuring with a small audience in a program...

EMMA

From the Simply Small series

This volume in the Simply Small board-book series introduces Emma, a little hedgehog with a heart of gold.

Emma and her three sisters exhaust themselves trudging along after Daddy up a steep hill. Inspired by the sweet scent in the air, Emma picks flowers and hands one to each of her three wilting sisters. They each give her a kiss in return, as does her proud father, and that makes: “Three flowers, / four kisses, and / five hedgehogs / —happy at home.” This final spread shows the five critters resting all cuddled together in a contented clump, with Emma’s sisters still holding onto their precious flowers. The simple, uncluttered illustrations complement the sparse but apt text. The only things pictured are the hedgehogs, the hill and the flowers, all of which are drawn with very thick, bold outlines. The sky is rendered a soft pink, the hill a light green and the hedgehogs shades of tan, with the blue, white and yellow flowers adding a bit of variety to the palette.

This sweet and simple offering is ideal for sharing one-on-one or for featuring with a small audience in a program celebrating family or, even better, small acts of kindness and love. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: April 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-897476-93-2

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Simply Read

Review Posted Online: April 16, 2014

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A pleasant holiday spent with a perfectly charming character.

SPOOKY POOKIE

One of Boynton's signature characters celebrates Halloween.

It's Halloween time, and Pookie the pig is delighted. Mom helps the little porker pick out the perfect Halloween costume, a process that spans the entire board book. Using an abcb rhyme scheme, Boynton dresses Pookie in a series of cheerful costumes, including a dragon, a bunny, and even a caped superhero. Pookie eventually settles on the holiday classic, a ghost, by way of a bedsheet. Boynton sprinkles in amusing asides to her stanzas as Pookie offers costume commentary ("It's itchy"; "It's hot"; "I feel silly"). Little readers will enjoy the notion of transforming themselves with their own Halloween costumes while reading this book, and a few parents may get some ideas as well. Boynton's clean, sharp illustrations are as good as ever. This is Pookie's first holiday title, but readers will surely welcome more.

A pleasant holiday spent with a perfectly charming character. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: July 7, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-553-51233-5

Page Count: 18

Publisher: Robin Corey/Random

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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An excellent, rounded effort from a creator who knows how to deliver.

EEK! HALLOWEEN!

The farmyard's chickens experience Halloween.

A round, full moon shines in the sky, and the chickens of Boynton's barnyard are feeling “nervous.” Pumpkins shine “with flickering eyes,” witches and wizards wander the pastures, and one chicken has seen “a mouse of enormous size.” It’s Halloween night, and readers will delight as the chickens huddle together and try to figure out what's going on. All ends well, of course, and in Boynton's trademark silly style. (It’s really quite remarkable how her ranks of white, yellow-beaked chickens evoke rows of candy corn.) At this point parents and children know what they're in for when they pick up a book by the prolific author, and she doesn't disappoint here. The chickens are silly, the pigs are cute, and the coloring and illustrations evoke a warmth that little ones wary of Halloween will appreciate. For children leery of the ghouls and goblins lurking in the holiday's iconography, this is a perfect antidote, emphasizing all the fun Halloween has to offer.

An excellent, rounded effort from a creator who knows how to deliver. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 23, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-7611-9300-5

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Workman

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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